The Wagner Daily


Stocks recovered a bit of their previous day’s losses yesterday, but lighter turnover and choppy price action suggested participation by the “smart money” was absent. The Nasdaq Composite bounced 0.9%, the S&P 500 0.6%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average 0.3%. Small and mid-caps advanced the most, but also fell the hardest on Tuesday. The small-cap Russell 2000 and S&P Midacp 400 indices posted matching gains of 1.4%. The main stock market indexes closed just below the middle of their intraday trading ranges.

In both the NYSE and Nasdaq, turnover receded 12% below the previous day’s levels, indicating mutual funds, hedge funds, and other institutional players remained on the sidelines throughout yesterday’s bounce. Still, trading exceeded 50-day average levels across the board. Advancing volume marginally exceeded declining volume in both the NYSE and Nasdaq exchanges.

As was the case with Monday’s session, yesterday’s gains were dominated by weak industry sectors bouncing from their lows. Formerly leading sectors such as Biotech and Healthcare moved only marginally higher. Again, there was also a lack of leadership among top growth stocks. Despite the gains in the major indices, yesterday’s session was largely a non-event within the overall context of recent market action.

Showing relative weakness among the main stock market indexes, the S&P Midcap 400 ($MID) is now testing support of its prior low from July of this year. If it breaks down to a new low, the inversely correlated UltraShort S&P Midcap ProShares (MZZ) may be a decent momentum trade. However, given recent market indecision, we view MZZ as merely a quick trade that should only be entered by those who are comfortable with the possibility of needing to close the trade just a day or two later. The horizontal line on the daily chart of MZZ below marks the breakout to a new closing high, though the intraday high of July 15 is a bit higher:

After scanning the chart patterns of more than 300 ETFs on the Morpheus ETF Roundup guide last night, we were very hard pressed to find a single ETF trade setup with a really nice chart pattern. Practically every ETF is showing major indecision, along with violent, whipsaw moves on its daily chart. The weekly charts don’t look much better. Broad-based ETFs that track indexes such as the S&P, Dow, and Nasdaq may be in play if they start breaking down to new lows (or new highs if UltraShort ETFs), but we’ve never been big fans of selling short the obvious breaks of support. Rather, we were more interested in selling short the first bounce into resistance that followed the September 4 sell-off, but Monday’s huge gap up above resistance levels ruined our anticipated entry points. So, now we’re back to the waiting game, and willing to wait it out as long as necessary. Regardless of a few recent stop-outs, we are on pace for a very profitable quarter. As such, it makes no sense to force the entry of merely mediocre-looking trades that could easily cause us to give back our hard-earned profits. Capital preservation mode rules!

Today’s Watchlist:

There are no new setups in the pre-market. Though we haven’t entered many new positions lately, we’ve preserved capital and prevented a lot of losses by using patience and discipline. Our sole open position is acting well, so we’ll just focus on that one for the time being. Assuming the weakness continues, we’ll be using bounces in the market to enter new short positions.

Daily Performance Report:

Below is an overview of all open positions, as well as a performance report on all positions that were closed only since the previous day’s newsletter. Net P/L figures are based on the $50,000 Wagner Daily model account size. Changes to open positions since the previous report are listed in red text below. Please review the Wagner Daily Subscriber Guide for important, automatic rules on trigger and stop prices.

    Open positions (coming into today):

      SMN long (200 shares from September 5 entry) –

      bought 41.29, stop 37.72, target 49.70, unrealized points = + 3.77, unrealized P/L = + $754

    Closed positions (since last report):


    Current equity exposure ($100,000 max. buying power):



    • As of early morning, the stock market is poised to open at or below yesterday’s lows. If it does, SMN should correspondingly open at or above yesterday’s high. We’ll be closely monitoring the price action of SMN, as we may sell into strength of the opening gap. If we do, we’ll promptly send an Intraday Trade Alert.
    • Reminder to subscribers – Intraday Trade Alerts to your e-mail and/or mobile phone are normally only sent to indicate a CHANGE to the pre-market plan that is detailed in each morning’s Wagner Daily. We sometimes send a courtesy alert just to confirm action that was already detailed in the pre-market newsletter, but this is not always the case. If no alert is received to the contrary, one should always assume we’re honoring all stops and trigger prices listed in each morning’s Wagner Daily. But whenever CHANGES to the pre-market stops or trigger prices are necessary, alerts are sent on an AS-NEEDED basis. Just a reminder of the purpose of Intraday Trade Alerts.

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Edited by Deron Wagner,
MTG Founder and
Head Trader